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Monday, September 06, 2004

George W. Bush: Antichrist Superstar?

Amidst all the criticism of the Presidency of George W. Bush from the Left, there has also been a fair amount from the Right as well. Most disagree with Bush's policies, particularly his budget-busting federal spending, some have questioned the propriety of the invasion of Iraq. However, most stop short of saying what a small, tinfoil-headed few that I will highlight in this post are starting to say.

Before I continue further, may I just invoke the disclaimer that always ran at the beginning and at the end of shows like "In Search Of" back in the '70s, and say that this post is meant for entertainment (and political satire) purposes only and not to foster a belief in the supernatural. It suggests one of many possible explanations for the mysterious subjects we are examining here, but not necessarily the only explanation. Your mileage may vary, void where prohibited, sorry, Tennessee...

Hey megalomaniac
You're no Jesus
Yeah, you're no fucking Elvis....

-- Incubus, "Megalomaniac"

The Antichrist has been a figure of speculation amongst believing Christians since the author of The Book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ penned his words. Most historians and those who believe that the Bible was not meant to be taken literally suggest that the book was written as a "word of encouragement" for the early Pauline church, which had begun to be persecuted in earnest by the Romans during the reign of Emperor Nero. The name "Nero Caesar," when rendered in Hebrew, comes out as either 666 or 616, the two variants of the Number of the Beast found in various translations of The Book of Revelation. However, most who take the Bible literally look at the book as prophecy, and have played games throughout the millenia looking for 666 in the names of the powerful. In the 1970s, for example, it was widely suggested that Henry Kissinger was the Antichrist, and there were numerological schemes to back it up.

So now we come to our friend Dubya. At face value, he doesn't seem like a promising candidate for the role of Antichrist. For one thing, he makes an extremely big deal of being a "Born-Again Christian." When asked who his favorite political philosopher was in one of the Bush/Gore debates of 2000, without any sort of pause for consideration he said, "Jesus Christ." He has flaunted his belief in the literalness of the Bible and in Christianity seemingly every chance he gets. But perhaps...perhaps...he doth protest too much. For sinister reasons. Like a great author, contemporaneous with the compilers of the King James translation of the Bible did say: "The Devil can cite Scripture for his purpose." I seem to remember also that the Book of Revelation says that even believers will be misled by the Antichrist and his False Prophet. How better for the Antichrist to mislead Christians than to say "I'm Christian too"?

The folks who have put up websites making the W/Antichrist connection seem to have in common a suspicion about the Skull and Bones society. In every link I've seen, the Skull and Bones connection is front and center. Nobody except initiates of the Yale secret society really knows what goes on in "The Tomb," their on-campus clubhouse. Satanic worship? Polysexual orgies? S&M? B&D? The ritual defilement of Geronimo's skull? Then again, Bush's opponent in the current election, Senator John Kerry, is also a Skull and Bonesman. The plot thickens and grows obese, indeed.

The most elaborate of these theories is found here. Initially, the author of the site intended it quite in jest, as this mirror of the first version of his site indicates. (It was initially modeled after a joke site declaring David Hasselhoff the Antichrist.)However, the guy seems to be dead serious now. He pulls together not only obvious parallels, but some non-obvious ones too.

Finally, it has been suggested that Pope John-Paul II is concerned about President George W. Bush's behavior, and furthermore concerned that he and some of his cabinet like Attorney General John Ashcroft are part of a "neo-Christian blood cult" that bears only superficial resemblance to the teachings of the man President Bush says is his "favorite philosopher."

I could go on like this for days, but I will just give you a link to a whole page of links, some in jest, some serious, linking President George W. Bush to infernal forces. And I'll leave it at that. I don't really buy what these folks are selling, let alone the whole concept that the Book of Revelation is anything other than a document written to encourage persecuted Christians during Rome's official persecution of the nascent religion, to say nothing about the religion of Christianity itself.

To conclude, here is a note of reality: it seems like someone in the Texas Air National Guard forgot to include some vital documents in Dubya's service file regarding those pesky gaps in his service record. The question of whether Dubya was AWOL during 1972 to 1973 seems to be one that does not want to go away. Is this behavior becoming of a person who currently holds the rank of Commander In Chief of the Armed Forces? We report, you decide.(tm)